“It’s never a good idea for me to wing it,” Jennifer Lawrence told David Letterman last night after he asked about her Golden Globes acceptance speech. Her fans, of course, would disagree — when Lawrence wings it, she tends to produce endlessly quotable lines about everything from her first meeting with Catching Fire director Francis Lawrence (“I spit egg inside his mouth when I was talking. Into his mouth”) to her post-red carpet ritual (“The first thing I do when I get off a carpet is take my heels off, rub my makeup everywhere, and basically pick up a garbage can and go ‘Rawwrrrrr!’ and dump it all over my head”).
Then again, sometimes Lawrence’s goofy sense of humor can get the Silver Linings Playbook star into trouble. Take that Golden Globes speech, for instance: Upon accepting her award for Best Actress in a Comedy or Musical, the first thing Lawrence said was, “What does it say? ‘I beat Meryl!'” Many viewers at home — including prolific Globes tweeter Lindsay Lohan — were scandalized; what right did this 22-year-old have to diss the world’s most celebrated actress?
But others understood what Lawrence was really doing — and while on the Late Show, she took the opportunity to set the record straight. “It was a quote from First Wives Club,” Lawrence said, explaining that Bette Midler’s character says the “I beat Meryl” line while examining a Golden Globe statuette. “I can’t believe nobody’s ever done it before!’
So there you have it: Jennifer Lawrence loves both Meryl Streep and the comedies of the mid ’90s, and she had no idea that paying homage to First Wives Club would make anybody mad. (Streep hasn’t yet responded to her use of the line, though Lawrence is sure that there’s no bad blood between them: “She doesn’t care.”) “I wanted to make a public statement, like: ‘Hey idiots, it’s a quote. From a movie,'” the actress told Letterman in closing. Mission accomplished!